Harvey Weinstein had to start wearing a tracking device six months ago, but authorities haven’t been able to find him more than 50 times. Prosecutors don’t think that’s an accident, and they want to make sure the disgraced movie mogul doesn’t get off scot-free for it.
In a Friday hearing, Assistant District Attorney Joan Illuzzi-Orbon asked Criminal Court Judge James Burke to raise Weinstein’s bail to $5 million, or a $50 million security bond secured by a payment of 10%. Weinstein’s bail was previously set at $1 million.
Illuzzi-Orbon alleged that authorities have not been able to track Weinstein on at least 56 separate occasions, Page Six reported.
“Here’s a man who has [run] multimillion-dollar businesses, and has juggled many, many issues at the same time,” Illuzzi-Orbon said, according to the New York Daily News. “It defies logic to believe that he cannot navigate taking his device with him when he travels outside his home.”
“The people’s position is none of the bracelet violations were accidental or in any way forgetful on the part of the defendant,” she added.
Weinstein’s lawyer, Donna Rotunno, maintained that “technical glitches” were largely responsible for Weinstein’s ankle monitor failures, the New York Daily News reported. Weinstein first posted bail in May, under an agreement that he would wear the device and stay in New York and Connecticut.
While Rotunno acknowledged that Weinstein did forget part of the monitor on one trip to Manhattan, she said there were simply not enough cell towers near his house to keep its signal strong.
Burke didn’t rule on the new bail request on Friday, though he arranged another hearing for Wednesday.
Weinstein has been charged with raping an unnamed woman in a Manhattan hotel room in 2013 and forcibly performing oral sex on production assistant Mimi Haleyi in 2006. His trial, set to start in January, will also feature testimony from “The Sopranos” actress Annabella Sciorra, who has said that Weinstein raped her in the early 1990s.
Sciorra’s testimony is expected to bolster prosecutors’ charges of predatory sexual assault, which require them to prove that Weinstein committed a serious sexual assault against at least two people. If he’s convicted, Weinstein could face life in prison.
Weinstein has pleaded not guilty and maintained that all of his sexual activity has been consensual. Dozens of women have now accused him of sexual misconduct.
Cover: Harvey Weinstein, right, arrives at court for a bail hearing, Friday, Dec. 6, 2019 in New York. (AP Photo/Mark Lennihan)